Adam Dickter's Continuum

Poles And Jews: Confronting Biases

Author's note: The original post misstated the name of Dr. Jud Newborn, cited below. Also, a commenter below disputes the accuracy of William Shirer's reference to a Polish cavalry charge against the Nazi invasion.

This week's controversy over President Obama’s use of the words “Polish death camp” is one that has forced me to confront some of my own biases.

Yahrzeit In Mitzpe Ramon

When it came time to observe my mother’s first yahrzeit last week, I was in Mitzpe Ramon in the Negev. A fitting place since my mother, Sondra, was an avid traveler and particularly enjoyed her many visits to Israel.

The itinerary for my trip was planned weeks in advance, and so I anticipated the need to find a minyan there, and was assured by the American Associates of Ben Gurion University, which hosted the junket, that it wouldn’t be a problem.

The machtesh at Mitzpeh Ramon.

Inside Ben-Gurion's Head

The founder of modern Israel had little doubt about his place in history.

David Ben-Gurion, who lived from 1886-1973, meticulously saved copies of every letter he wrote and even asked his father to save letters he received because they would be needed later, for the history books.  His diaries contained detailed notes of what he was experiencing at crucial moments in history. Less apparent, though, was what this instrumental figure was feeling in his heart.

A Night In Be'er Sheva

One of the first things we did when we checked into the U-Tel Guest Apartments at Ben Gurion University’s Be'er Sheva campus was follow the yellow sign to the closest bomb shelter.

In the basement of the building next door  were two massive airlock-type doors, with a shower area in between for dealing with chemical or biological weapon exposure.

Santa At The Kotel, And Other Randomness

I had to share these pictures from Shushan Purim eve at the Kotel. I saw hundreds of people in costumes in Jerusalem, but this one wins the prize for chutzpah.

This Purim reveler is making a list and checking it twice.

A Double Dose Of Purim

I didn’t plan it this way, but my travel schedule today and tomorrow is a Purim-lover’s delight.

Pre-Purim in Tel Aviv.

A Double Dose Of Purim

I didn’t plan it this way, but my travel schedule today and tomorrow is a Purim-lover’s delight.

IVF And Religion

Some news reports over the weekend suggest that Pope Benedict has come out against in-vitro fertilization, when in truth that has been a longstanding policy of the church. What may be new was his emphatic rejection, in which he was quoted as saying it is “arrogant.”

Oscar Race Won't Be 'Extremely Close'

It's a retro night at the Oscars, with two films that hearken back to the early days of cinema up for top honors, and a host who is a blast from the past.

For the first time , I’ve managed to see every one of the nominees for Best Picture. (Hey, the kids are grown up, and no reason to limit my nights at the theater to Pixar offerings).

It’s a safe bet that the real competition is between:

The Good Wife: Is Giselle Bundchen An Aishes Chayil?

"A woman of valor, who can find her?"

Many Jews ask that question every Friday night with the recitation of the song "Aishet Chayil" at the Shabbat table.

One answer to the question: Tom Brady.

The Patriots quarterback may not have walked away with an MVP trophy or a Super Bowl ring after last Sunday's showdown in Indianapolis, but he did get a reminder that he is married to his No. 1 fan.

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